Bendbacks for flatwings ..... [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Bendbacks for flatwings .....

02-25-2006, 10:46 PM
In my search for the ideal keel-hook style to build a foul-proof flatwing, Jfbasser had suggested trying an owner oversize worm-hook and gave me a couple to try at the saltwater edge show. I like the result.

The hook is a 7/0 and the fly is 9 inches tip to tail.

My "bend-it-yourself" solutions for flatwings last season gave good results but hooking performance was disapointing at times, usually on better sized fish. Finding an XL style hook with enough shank to bend and create a big enough tying platform whilst still retaining enough gape was the challenge.

This hook style is a well proven formula in other applications and I'm looking forward to more fish coming to hand this season.

Sea trials are already scheduled and reports will be forthcoming. :smokin:

02-25-2006, 11:21 PM
I've been using those keel/worm hooks with good success...
Pearl braid produces an interesting body prophile effect and the fly tends to do a broadside darting action when stripped with intent...
Although I still tend to use the smaller Tiemco and Verivas hooks for the more diminutive critters.

02-26-2006, 08:36 AM
Nice looking flies guys. Was wondering about the Penguin ,now I know what he is up to this Winter. :D FishHawk

02-26-2006, 08:54 AM
Therre a re a number of offset shank worm hook styles. The one that Adrian used to tie his fly has an elongated straight shank tying "platform" at the eye relative to other variation of the style of hook (furthest to the right in pics below..The specific substyle is the "oversized worm hook" to make it distinct from the other substyles of ovesized hooks...only two sizes 7/0 and 11/0)..Nice fly Adrian, I have beeen waiting to see your secret color combo:D

02-26-2006, 08:58 AM
great looking flies and that worm hook seems like a terrific idea. what baitfish are these flies immitating? they look just like the smelt in lake ontario. some with a greenish chartreuse cast and some with a pinkish purplish cast. i know a certain river full of steelhead that these would work well on too.

Sean Juan
02-27-2006, 08:52 AM
Very nice fly Adrian,

I've done a lot of bend backs on worm hooks, and lightweight circle hooks they work well but I always use a fiber based material like bucktail or superhair to minimize the effects of fouling...did you do anything special to keep those saddle flapping?

02-27-2006, 12:50 PM

Ever tie a mono loop first before building the fly?

Don't think it would be enough to flip the hook over.

02-27-2006, 08:52 PM

Last season I did some experiments with various mono loops and weed-guard styles as a way to prevent fouling but in the end they all came up short. To be fair the test I used was a bit extreme. I made a test "fly" with a very long wispy bucktail wing and no body. This was then subjected to some deliberately bad casting strokes in the back yard, the objective being to make the fly foul. I was looking for a design that I could cast at night and 'swim' in the currents, confident that when it came back in five minutes later, the lack of takes was not due to fouling.

It is possible to modify the casting stroke by opening up the loop and slowing things down which minimizes the tendency to foul. I found that roll casting rarely results in a fouled fly. But there are times at night when a quick "shot" to cover a splash somewhere way-out in the darkness is called for. I like the confidence of knowing that one of the variables has been eliminated.

The other nice thing about inverted styles is you can drag them across the bottom on the flats without hanging up on bits of weed, clam shells, dead crabs etc. and spoiling the presentation :smokin:

02-27-2006, 09:45 PM
Adrian the bendback flat wings using the 20lb.mono loop I showed you at the SWE. show the other day don't foul ,I've tried in my experimenting with them to make them foul,I've over powered casts.made ridiculas amounts of false casts ,but so far appear to be foul proof.

02-28-2006, 05:39 AM
Yes, that's one variation that I hadn't tried.:smokin:

02-28-2006, 08:43 AM

Sounds like you have given this a lot of thought.

Another area to explore might be the double salmon style hook.
The flat wing style might fit perfectly between the two hooks and act like a guide to keep the feathers positioned. Just need a little tooling required to put the step bend in the hook. Also where the two shanks meet keeps the flat wing style of tying feathers from rolling over. No need to build a platform.

02-28-2006, 09:36 AM
Flatwings on an inverted double?

As the Guinness professors would say, BRILLIANT :D

02-28-2006, 10:38 AM on an inverted double? :confused:

02-28-2006, 11:30 AM

Here's something along the same lines. This designed is a fast sinker with a tadpole like swimming action. I've bent the hooks up in the wing to make it less likely to snag weeds or bottom. This style is helpful when larger materials like deer heads minimizes hook gap.

02-28-2006, 11:47 AM
I want more clarification. How do you tie a bend back with a flatwing without the saddles riding on one side of the bend?

02-28-2006, 12:16 PM
That's what we are trying to figure out. :Eyecrazy:

02-28-2006, 12:21 PM

Its all in the angles the hook provides and getting the bucktail platform set before adding the saddles.

Actually in this instance "bendback" is a mis-nomer because the profile is more like a keel-hook.

The oversize worm hook has the tying area almost in line with the hook point so it didn't take too much bucktail to have the saddles swinging clear. Also in the water the hook bend tends to 'ride low'.

03-01-2006, 09:13 AM
Now Im interested in this one I like the bend backs an will have to pick up some hook this week an give it a shot be back next week w/a fly ?????

03-01-2006, 09:17 AM
RAY, just a THOUGHT if you use deer hair for the PLATFORM wont the feather FLOAT ABOVE the HOOK POINT???

03-01-2006, 02:16 PM
Adrian , just thought of something, is the bucktail platform interfering with the hook point and perhaps that's why there are some missed hook-ups?

03-01-2006, 02:30 PM
Adrian , just thought of something, is the bucktail platform interfering with the hook point and perhaps that's why there are some missed hook-ups?

Wouldn't the hackles be more of an issue? The bucktail acts almost like a weed guard and passes around the hook point when pressure is applied because it is so fine. Whereas the width of the hackle in theory could get caught on the point with the pressure added from a take and prevent the hook from penetrating right?


03-01-2006, 04:03 PM
Bucktail & hackle are no match for a laser sharp point and a firm hook-set:lildevl:

Just ask the guys who rig worm hooks weedless buried in plastic sluggos and slick willies (see John's rigging pics above).

I can see there might be an issue if the point hit dead center on the hackle stem but the saddles in these flies have very fine stems.

The problem with my b-i-y efforts was not having enough gape after bending the hook whilst leaving a long enough platform to tie on.

Here's one from early last season

I actually watched a striper inhale this fly. I saw its mouth close and the fish turn away. When I set the hook it slipped right out of the fish's mouth. The fish didn't spook so I cast again and the same thing happened. Believe it or not the same thing happened two more times. :Eyecrazy: Some dumb fish maybe (it was a keeper by the way).

At that point I knew I had to go back to the drawing board.

03-01-2006, 06:03 PM
You must have made a series of perfect presentations, though:smokin:

03-01-2006, 09:25 PM
Adrian - looking at the fly in your last photo (the DIY bendback) I wonder if the aggressive bend in the shank was causing the hook to rotate sideways when the fish bit or when you pulled the hook against its lips. If the hook rotated so that the point pretty much lined up with the gap between the fish's lips, then it might slip right through with a little help from the hackles and hair. If the hook point were offset you probably would have hooked that fish the first time. Might be a worthwhile experiment to twist the point off-center and give that fly another try.